Review: The story is about a tribe of cats called the Jellicles. They must decide every year which one will rise to the Heaviside Layer and make their way back to a new Jellicle life.
Director: Tom Hooper
Actors: Francesca Hayward, Taylor Swift, Idris Elba, Laurie Davidson, Rebel Wilson, Judi Dench, Jennifer Hudson, Ian McKellen, Mette Towley, James Corden, Jason Derulo, Robbie Fairchild, Ray Winstone, Naoimh Morgan and Laurent Bourgeois
Genre: Comedy, Drama, Family, Fantasy and Musical
I have to say that I went into this not knowing anything about the stage musical “Cats” and have never seen the stage version. I do know that it is loved by 1,000’s of people. This first started off as a group of poems called “Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats,” by T.S. Eliot. It was then made into a smash hit musical in the West End by Andrew Lloyd Webber. The musical is one of the longest-running shows in the West End; it received its world premier at the New London Theatre in 1981, where it played for 21 record-breaking years and almost 9,000 performances. Apparently, Andrew Lloyd Webber wrote new songs exclusively for this film. Tom Hooper has worked on The King’s Speech (2010) and also Les Miserables (2012), both which I really enjoyed. However, I did find he wasn’t really the right director to direct this film. I felt he was too much out of his comfort zone and it was maybe a bit too demanding for him. Tom Hooper has managed to get an amazing cast together including Francesca Hayward, Ian McKellen, Taylor Swift and Judi Dench just to name a few. One thing I do think is a shame is that they should have used Judi Dench and Ian McKellen a bit more and the film would have been more enjoyable and almost might have worked. I do know that not everybody would go and see this film to see Judi Dench and Ian McKellen especially the younger generation. I was particularly impressed with the dance sequences especially as all the dancers had to do it in time with each other. Also Jennifer Hudson and Taylor Swift’s voices were amazing. The song “Memories” by Jennifer Hudson I enjoyed but it is the only song from the film which I come away remembering. I did find all the fur on the cats a bit too much and that was the only thing I was thinking of all the way through. I also found that the twitching of ears on their heads very distracting. All a bit too furry for my liking!! Also their tails didn’t stay still more more than one minute, they were all over the place and I found myself watching their tails more than anything. There were times where I did slightly get distracted and a bit on the bored side and was waiting for it to move on. I have to say that I have no emotions for this film. For instance, during the song “Memories” I didn’t feel anything. Usually in a musical there is a song where I get emotional but not in this. There have been film critics who have given this film 0 or 1 stars. The only real problem I have is that I don’t think it worked as a full feature length film. I have given it three stars because it does contain two of my favourite actors, Judi Dench and Ian McKellen plus very good performances from Jennifer Hudson and Taylor Swift. The real problem with this film is that it hasn’t got a real plot or story-line, and no main character you can really relate to.